Relationships are hard. Everyday, I encounter numerous people, personalities, behaviors and actions that intersect with my life. Some are good and some are challenging. Recently, I was asked on how I deal with people. Let me give you some insights.
I start my day with some type of devotion with God. The best thing I can do for me and others in my life is build my relationship with God. I can choose to read the bible, worship, pray or sit in silence. During that time, I am not growing to be a better pastor. I am growing me – recognizing and confessing my sin and faults, forgiving myself and others and inviting the Holy Spirit to lead my day. This time is important to me because it really sets a foundation of humility in my day. I know I make mistakes, sin and overall blow it. This time of renewal allows me to set my heart right and allows me to see the need for grace with others. This is the foundation of my day.
I live by the motto “Love God and Love People.” It is simple, easy to remember and it is the hardest thing for me to do. My devotional time set me up to express my love for God. Then, I have to go out and allow my actions to line up with honoring God. I used to be very frustrated if I couldn’t do things perfectly. I am learning that if I do my best in anything I do, then God will cover the rest. I don’t always get the results I want but I can’t say it has been life altering.
Then I have to love people. Here is where the 1% comes in. I am very self-centered, critical and judgemental by nature. Going through the Freedom courses and personal mentoring has really helped me to give all that to God. I now choose to pursue relationships with grace and boundaries. If I can find 1% to agree with someone, than I can have a great relationship with them based on the things we do agree on. I value that they are different and believe the best that God is working in their life. That is grace.
Relationship with others is more important than being right and judgmental of them. I will own my part if I have done things that have hurt or brought pain to them. I ask them to forgive me. I will listen to their feedback and find the “action items” for me to grow. The boundaries come in when I recognize the things I will not be accountable for based on their expectations and desires. In other words, I will own my stuff but not theirs.
I challenge you today to try loving God and loving people. Be prepared to make an impact on heaven and earth!